I love living in Winston-Salem. It’s an awesome town full of incredible people, and it takes all of 15 minutes (or less) to get just about anywhere. This was quite a (welcome) change after living in Atlanta.
The only downside I can think of to having a six-minute drive to work is the fact that I don’t get much time in the car for podcasts. So that means I usually keep podcast listening as a special treat for longer drives (like the one I made to Atlanta this past weekend) or for long walks with Fulton. It actually makes it fun, and I sometimes save up podcasts if I know I have a long drive ahead of me to give me something to look forward to.
I caught up on lots of great podcast goodness during my drive time this past weekend, and it reminded me that I’d been meaning to share my top podcast picks with y’all (and to get some suggestions from you as well so I can add some more podcast to my go-to line-up!). Here goes:
- This American Life. Forever and ever and ever, This American Life will be my hands-down favorite podcast. This is the podcast that made me fall in love with podcasts. If you’re new (or new-ish) to This American Life, I’d recommend splurging and spending $2.99 on the This American Life app. That way, you have access to the full library of allllll the show’s episodes since it started back in 1995. (Get excited.)
- Serial. Well, of course I love Serial. Who doesn’t? It’s in between seasons right now, but I wanted to be sure to include it (and I think it belongs here below This American Life, as it’s a bit of a spinoff of that show).
- Invisibilia. This one’s an NPR show, so you know it’s good. Kevin and I are huge fans of this show, which dives into the “invisible forces that control human behavior.” It’s the perfect intersection of human-centric storytelling and scientific backing, and hosts Lulu and Alix are great (despite sounding virtually identical, which can get somewhat confusing).
- The Longest Shortest Time. No, I’m not a parent yet, but I’d argue that this parenting podcast is interesting for parents and non-parents alike. (Actually, I learned about it thanks to an episode of This American Life when Ira Glass — also not a parent — recommended it.) I’ve enjoyed the variety of this show, with topics ranging from foster parenting to deciding if you want to have children to talking to your kids about sex and so much more. (There’s also a corresponding Facebook group, which seems like a wonderful resource if you’re a parent of a young child looking to connect with and get advice from other parents in a similar life stage.)
- Strangers. Kevin always makes fun of my love for the heartbreaking. I do, for whatever reason, seek out stories about people with terrible illnesses or dealing with big life problems. I don’t know what it is about those stories of struggle, but I like hearing about how people deal with roadblocks and hardship and I try to learn from those coping mechanisms. Anyway, I’ve loved this podcast, and while it certainly doesn’t exclusively focus on tragic tales, there are a good number of those included. Within the tragedy, though (when it’s that kind of story), there’s always an intentionality behind learning from those things, dissecting them, etc. Anyway, give it a listen and see what you think.
- Nerdette. Described as “a safe place for nerding out about all the things you’re watching, reading, listening to and encountering IRL,” this engaging podcast ranges in topic from the history of birth control to Game of Thrones to climate change — essentially any topic the show’s guest in a given episode happens to be a nerd about. (I love the quote from their latest episode, which featured British writer and feminist Caitlin Moran. Caitlin was talking about the concept of “giddy optimism,” and one of the hosts commented on that being the difference between hipsters and nerds. “Hipsters like things until someone else does, but nerds like them no matter how many other people do and want to tell you about it. Giddy optimism is what being a nerd is.” Yes! My thoughts exactly.)
- Chewing the Fat. If you love food — talking about food, in particular — give this podcast a try. It’s hosted by two food journalists (so they know their stuff) and talk about cooking, culture, spotlight folks in the culinary scene, and more.
What are your favorite podcasts? Please help me add to my list!